Jill Biden, Kamala Harris to rally in North Carolina this week as the Joe Biden question lingers

Two surrogates for President Joe Biden – his wife and Vice President – will stump for him this week in North Carolina amid calls from both sides of the political divide for the 81-year-old Democrat to relinquish his race for a second term in the White House to a younger candidate. 

First Lady Jill Biden will be in Wilmington on Monday, though no details of where or when she will speak have been released, the Raleigh News & Observer reported. Monday’s visit will mark Jill Biden’s third visit to the state in less than two weeks. 

She showed up in Charlotte three days before her husband’s disastrous June 27 debate performance against former President Donald Trump in Atlanta. That showing sparked widespread concern within Democratic circles about Joe Biden’s mental acuity and fitness not only to take on another four-year term but to hold down his presidential duties through the end of his current term. 

Jill Biden accompanied her husband to a rally in Raleigh the day after the debate, in an attempt to demonstrate that the President had simply had an off night in Atlanta. The President appeared in top form during the post-debate rally at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds, though his insistence that he could beat Trump in November and remain an effective chief executive persisted. 

Vice President Kamala Harris, who sits at or near the top of potential Biden replacements should he drop out of the race, is expected in Greensboro, North Carolina on Wednesday. Harris has visited the state 14 times since becoming Vice President. Six of those trips were this year. 

The Biden Administration has showered considerable attention on the Old North State since the debate. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, accompanied by North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper, recently toured several North Carolina cities to break ground on infrastructure projects championed by the administration.

So far, no North Carolina Democrats are among those elected officials calling for Biden to end his bid for a second term. A group of Democratic Governors, including Cooper, met with Biden virtually last week. In a statement posted to X, Cooper said he fully supports Biden’s candidacy against Trump, who he said was a threat to American democracy.

“We had a good meeting with the President talking about what’s needed to win,” Cooper said. “Donald Trump is an existential threat to our democracy, and everyone in the room agreed that defeating him is imperative. President Biden told us he is definitely running for re-election, he is our nominee and we’ll continue doing everything we can to deliver North Carolina for him.” 

At the post-debate rally, Cooper delivered a similar message of support for Biden and condemnation of Trump. Cooper is not currently running for office and is term limited as Governor. Cooper introduced Biden, who hinted he might have a role for the North Carolina Governor in his next administration.

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